Bird Feeder Engineering: Discovery at Home


  • Recycled materials.
  • Tape.
  • Scissors.
  • String/yarn.
  • Bird seed/food


  1. First, create or locate a recycled container that will hold the bird seed.
  2. Create a lid or open space at the top so you are able to fill the feeder with bird seed.
  3. Cut small holes in the bottom part of the container.
  4. Use a small piece of cardboard to create a space that will collect the bird seed at the base, so the birds can access the seed.
  5. Cut two holes in the top of the container.
  6. Thread string/yarn through the holes you created at the top of the container. This will be how you hang the bird feeder later.
  7. Decorate your bird feeder.
  8. Fill the bird feeder with bird seed and hang up outside.

Ways to expand it:

  • Keep track of the data! Watch the bird feeder several times throughout the day and count how many birds you see.
  • Take pictures of the birds that visit the bird feeder.
  • Research and learn more about the different types of birds you see.
  • If your bird feeder isn't attracting as many birds as you thought it would, try a redesign!

How do kids benefit?

  • Fine motor skills. Kids practice using the small muscles in their hands later used for writing.
  • Basic engineering skills. Engineers solve problems with constraints, in this case, limited materials and the needs of birds. They learn to solve problems by using the engineering design process: asking questions, coming up with solutions, building, testing and improving.
  • Compassion and nurturing skills. It is important for kids to be encouraged to think about and care for other living things so they are able to practice those skills throughout their youth.